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DayStarter: Expect sunny skies; Floridian Democrats and Republicans head to the polls, and pier approach renderings are unveiled

Look for mostly sunny skies today, according to 10Weather WTSP. Temperatures throughout the bay area should climb into the 80s.

• Dense fog over Tampa Bay dropped visibility to less than 100 feet in some areas early Tuesday and forced the Florida Highway Patrol to close the Sunshine Skyway Bridge. Troopers advised drivers to find alternate routes.

• It's Election Day in Florida. The presidential primary is tops on the ballot and Marco Rubio's political fate hangs in the balance. Polls are open locally from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Remember, this is a primary, so only registered Republicans and Democrats can vote in the presidential preference election. Tampa Bay Times reporters are in the field following this developing story all day. Keep up with them — and brush up on what you need to bring with you when you vote — in our live blog.

• Mother Teresa will be made a saint on Sept. 4. Pope Francis set the canonization date today, paving the way for the nun who cared for the poorest of the poor to become the centerpiece of his yearlong focus on the Catholic Church's merciful side.

• USF's women's basketball team hasn't reached the point where an NCAA Tournament berth remains a rite of March. It's still more novelty than formality. Hence the whoops, hugs and high-fives when the Bulls, flanked by a couple hundred fellow observers at the Sun Dome Arena Club, saw their name pop up in the waning stretch of Monday night's NCAA Tournament selection show. But when the initial bliss subsided, bewilderment set in. In a best-case scenario, the Bulls (23-9) — a No. 6 seed in the Bridgeport, Conn., region — are staring at a fourth meeting this calendar year against three-time defending national champion Connecticut in the Elite Eight.

• Cigar City Brewing, the independent brewery that helped put Tampa Bay on the map for craft beer, announced yesterday that it has agreed to sell a controlling interest of the company to another craft brewery in Colorado.

• Those eager to have a say about how the gateway to the new St. Petersburg pier will look and function will get a chance to do so today when designers of the $20 million project unveil their preliminary concepts. Find out what's in store with our sneak peek before you go.

• Sarah Geren is convinced the deputy killed in a wrong-way crash Saturday on the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway sacrificed himself to save her life. Hillsborough County sheriff's Deputy John Kotfila was driving behind Geren about 2:45 a.m. when he suddenly accelerated and pulled in front of her, putting himself in the path of a sport utility vehicle barreling down the expressway toward the two cars. "I feel like he was trying to be a human shield," Geren, 42, said Monday outside the Sheriff's Fallen Heroes Memorial.

• Russia starts a partial withdrawal of its military forces from Syria, a move that President Vladimir Putin asserts is intended to help peace negotiations in Geneva aimed at ending the conflict. The withdrawal coincides with the five-year anniversary of the beginning of street protests that led to the war.

• Myanmar's parliament elected Htin Kyaw as the country's new president today in a watershed moment that ushers the longtime opposition party of Aung San Suu Kyi into government after 54 years of direct or indirect military rule.

• Just ahead of St. Patrick's Day, President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden meet with acting Prime Minister Enda Kenny of Ireland at the White House.

• Federal Reserve officials are to gather for a two-day debate on whether a bumpy start to the year is now in the rearview mirror, clearing the way for higher interest rates. The steady growth of the domestic economy suggests that the Fed's plans to gradually raise its benchmark interest rate have been delayed, not derailed.

• Here are the top things to do today around Tampa Bay, including some early St. Patrick's Day parties and international teams here to play baseball.

• Our food editor Michelle Stark checked out four of the new snack subscription services (and, yes, that is a thing) that play into the idea that it's better to eat smaller meals throughout the day. See what she found when her snacks arrived in the mail.

[10Weather WTSP]

[10Weather WTSP]

DayStarter: Expect sunny skies; Floridian Democrats and Republicans head to the polls, and pier approach renderings are unveiled 03/15/16 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 15, 2016 10:06am]
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